A consortium of trade associations representing the renewables industry and related sectors has sent a joint open letter to UK Chancellor Rishi Sunak, making the case for renewables to be “embedded” into the government’s stimulus packages to address the economic recession caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, while addressing climate change.
In the letter, the Anaerobic Digestion and Bioresources Association (ADBA), the Association for Decentralised Energy, ECA, the Renewable Energy Association, Scottish Renewables and the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association, highlight the value of scaling-up the renewables sector to develop a circular economy that meets net-zero targets and provides not only a return on investment but also millions of jobs and energy security.
Referring to Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s campaign to ‘Build Back Better’, the letter signatories are calling on the government to ensure the UK ‘builds back green’, by choosing renewables as a safer and more lucrative investment option than fossil fuels; focusing on job creation across all renewables and related low-carbon technologies (not just solar and wind); ensuring energy security for the UK is achieved through renewables.
Charlotte Morton, ADBA’s chief executive, said: “Investing in renewables and circular economy technologies is now an absolute necessity to ensure we transition out of fossil fuels into green energy sources to achieve the UK’s net-zero targets, creating tens of thousands of green jobs in the process.
“AD and biogas alone can create 30,000 direct jobs and cut the UK’s annual greenhouse gas emissions by 6% by 2030 – especially in hard-to-decarbonise sectors such as transport, heat and agriculture. They also support the waste management sector by recycling organic matter and turning it into green energy biofertilisers.”
Morton added that ADBA was “delighted” to be teaming up with renewables and related associations to make the case for their industries and ensure they play a part in building a better, greener economy.
Claire Mack, chief executive of Scottish Renewables, added: “Our research has shown that every gigawatt of renewable power installed in Scotland has created 1,500 jobs and added £133 million (€147 million) of GVA to our economy.
“Put simply, the renewable energy industry is Scotland’s passport to green economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. No other industry but renewables provides the opportunity for investment, improvement, health, and tackling the climate emergency in one, often shovel-ready package.”